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Refrigerator Types

Types Of Refrigerators

Refrigerators come in a variety of shapes and sizes to compliment any setting, whether it is an indoor kitchen, an outdoor kitchen or a home bar. Before you choose a refrigerator, it is important to understand the difference between the different types available:

  • Full-Size Refrigerators
    • Generally designed for indoor use in a variety of styles (French Door, Side-by-Side, etc.)
    • Usually available with more features than outdoor or compact models
    • Will not hold up against the elements outside of a home or business

  • Outdoor Refrigerators
    • Perfect for outdoor parties or events, prevents constant traffic in/out of your home
    • Designed to keep food and drinks cold regardless of the surrounding weather conditions
    • Generally UL approved for outdoor use and will hold up against harsh rains, sleet and high heat
    • Most models are considered under-counter and are designed to compliment outdoor kitchens
    • Can also come in full-size models

  • Compact Refrigerators
    • Great as a secondary storage option for a home bar or a garage
    • Also perfect height for kids beverages and snacks
    • Generally designed to fit under a standard 36 inch counter
    • Usually range in height from 33 inches to 35 inches
    • Can be slightly larger and/or used as stand alone units

  • ADA Compliant Refrigerators
    • Comply with the standards created by the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990
    • Designed at 32 inches tall to fit under these counter top restrictions

Refrigerator Styles

  • Top Freezer
    • Puts frozen foods at eye level for easy access
    • Generally have more usable storage space than other styles
    • Usually cheaper than other styles, perfect for buys on a budget

  • Bottom Freezer
    • Very popular style among consumers
    • Puts your refrigerator section at eye level
    • Tend to be more energy efficient than top freezer models
    • Offer less usable freezer space than comparable top freezer models

  • Side-by-Side Refrigerators
    • Allows both refrigerated and frozen foods to be at eye level
    • Tend to have an ice and water dispenser or other features in the doors
    • Narrow doors of a side-by-side refrigerator are great for tight kitchens
    • Normally only get 65% usable space from the listed capacity
    • Narrow shelves make it difficult to store pizza boxes and other large items

  • French Door Refrigerators
    • Combines the best features of side-by-side and bottom freezer models
    • Full-width refrigerated compartment easily accommodates large platters, pizza boxes and other large items
    • Usually sport a bottom-mounted freezer compartment
    • Some models are available with either dual freezer compartments or a second, counter-height drawer
    • Most models offer some type of through-the-door ice and water dispensers

  • Drawer Style Refrigerators
    • Perfect choice for families where freestanding refrigerators don't offer enough room
    • Can be mounted under the counter or in an island
    • Perfect for storing drinks and specialty items that are often needed while cooking
    • Saves the time of walking back and forth to the fridge
    • Inexpensive to run, but inefficient on energy

  • All Refrigerator
    • Perfect for someone who wants an extra unit for more storage space
    • Full height models are usually slightly narrower than normal refrigerators
    • Most compact and outdoor refrigerators come in this style